Well-known Sheffield building has received National Lottery funding to become a music hub

A historic Sheffield building is to be restored with £250,000 of development funding from the National Lottery. 

After being granted planning permission in 2022, Grade II listed Canada House on Commercial Street will be turned into a new music facility that aims to create a hub for music education and develop Sheffield into a music city. 

The project is being spearheaded by Harmony Works, which is supported by Sheffield Music Academy and Sheffield Music Hub as well as being backed by the city council and the University of Sheffield.

Harmony Works describes itself as “the home  of inspirational  music education and opportunity, enriching and enhancing the lives and futures of young people and their communities across the Sheffield Region”.

Professor Gill Valentine, Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Sheffield, said: “From bringing a heritage building back into public use to providing opportunities for young people in the region to pursue their musical journeys, this is such good news for the city in so many different ways and we are delighted to be part of this wonderful story. ”

Canada House, formally named Panache House, has been a staple in Castlegate since it was built in 1874. Originally the head offices of the Sheffield United Gas Light Company, the renowned building has also been Turn Ups nightclub and Bloomers pub throughout the 80s and No. 1 Oriental Buffet Restaurant until 2011. 

Harmony Works has also benefited from the Government’s Levelling Up Fund with £20 million given to Sheffield City Council in October 2021 in an effort to transform the Castlegate area including funding for the organisation.

Project director Emily Pieters said: “Thanks to The National Lottery Heritage Fund we can press on with the project development work and further fundraising which will turn our plans into reality and realise our ambition to provide a new home for creative opportunity for all of Sheffield’s children and young people.” 

The plans include creating new practice and teaching rooms, community areas, a café and a performance space in the glass-domed hall.

The building, which includes many different sized spaces that can be used in teaching and performing environments, is set to open in late 2026.

Written by Erin Morris

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